Terror funds: Sympathisers in Saudi, Kuwait pose biggest risk

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While India looks to choke the finances of Dawood Ibrahim, there are also growing concerns of how several Saudi and Kuwaiti nationals are helping Indians wanting to tread the terror path.

The Indian government has decided that it would crack down on the Rs 3000 crore worth of assets belonging to Dawood Ibrahim in India, but on the other hand is the growing charity done by Saudi and Kuwaiti nationals which is helping youth take the path of terror with ease.


However given the present scenario, India would be more worried about the financing that takes place in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait. As long as this exists there will be no dearth of terrorists. Take the recent Areeb Majeed case for instance. He had revealed that a Kuwaiti national Abdulla Hadi had given him 1000 US dollars when he was in Iraq fighting alongside the ISIS.

Saudis's sympathizers:

It goes without saying that Saudi Arabia has done its bit in fighting terror. It has managed to eradicate almost all modules on its soil post 9/11 and also the 2003 Riyadh bombings. While it is facing another battle today with the emergence of the ISIS, the bigger problem is that the country has too many sympathizers who splurge money which lands up in accounts of terrorist organizations.

Terrorist groups have managed to dodge intelligence agencies by making use of the Haj pilgrims. Groups such as the Lashkar-e-Tayiba or the al Qaeda put up charity boxes and collect funds from Haj pilgrims. The pilgrims never know where their money is going.

A pilgrim when asked for a donation never refuses as he has come to a holy place. He puts in a sizeable donation into these boxes and unfortunately several such boxes belong to terror groups. The investigations in the Mumbai train blasts also revealed that there was a similar modus operandi and an amount of Rs 3 lakh to fund the attack was collected in the above mentioned fashion.

The next challenge for India is the ISIS:

While the Indian government has by and large convinced several persons about the ill-effects of joining the ISIS, the next problem on hand could be the lure of cash. Several youth are likely to be lured by big money from sympathizers in Saudi and Kuwait. These persons do not mind spending any amount of money as long as they are able to rope in people.

The case of Areeb Majeed is a classic example. All he needed to do was show intent about joining the ISIS. The manner in which the module of the ISIS helped him in record speed is important to state.

He was told to get in touch with an Afghan national Rehman Dawlaty. The travel cost from India to Iraq was coming up to around Rs 2.57 lakh and Rehman assisted Majeed with Rs 1.65 lakh, the National Investigating Agency states.

However that was not all. After Majeed reached Bhagdad, he called Rehman and told him that they would need more money. Once Rehman was convinced that Majeed was serious about his job, he put him in touch with a Kuwaiti National Abdulla Hadi. After Majeed handed out the details, an amount of 1000 US dollars was transferred using the Western Union Money transfer.

What needs to be done:

Fighting terrorism and its finances cannot be a one nation job. It would need excellent international cooperation. The idea should be to make moving money around extremely difficult. In India the biggest problem continues to be the hawala network and if the international community cooperates the same could be blocked at source.

Similarly when it comes to dealing with a Dawood Ibrahim, Hafiz Saeed or any ISIS sympathizer, it is extremely important to seek international help and choke them of their finances. A terrorist or a criminal becomes defunct without access to finances.

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